The Reading Eagle is the major newspaper serving Reading and Berks County in Pennsylvania. The family-owned newspaper has a daily circulation of nearly 46,000 and a Sunday circulation surpassing 64,000.
Luis Fernandez, Circulation Sales Specialist for the Reading Eagle, was searching for a fun and exciting way to increase readership, boost single-copy sales, reach online readers and inspire goodwill in the tight-knit Reading community. Luis came accross the Best Bingo Promo and felt this might be a good fit, but that they would need to find a sponsor to make it work.
Fernandez enlisted the aid of Reading Eagle Advertising Director, Lori Gerhart, to find a sponsor who could help the paper accomplish their goals. She took the challenge to the newspaper sales staff and Carole Renninger, Advertising Sales Consultant, knew that her client, the Berkshire Mall, would be an ideal partner for the promotion. Bingo promotion sponsors typically receive a tremendous amount of exposure throughout the duration of a Bingo contest – but this contest took a spin that ended up benefiting the Berkshire Mall in a way no one expected. Fernandez, Gerhart and the Eagle marketing team proposed holding an event as the grand finale of the bingo promotion. They asked their readers to send in their winning bingo game cards and then held the grand prize drawing in the Mall to select the winning BINGO card from all entries submitted.
How it Worked:
Best Bingo Promo delivered 70,000 bingo cards to The Reading Eagle to be distributed in a Sunday paper (the majority of newspapers report that the highest number of single-copy sales occur on Sundays). They opted for a coverall game of Bingo, and published a call number daily. To encourage single copy sales on a day other than Sunday, the Reading Eagle decided to use a bonus day and publish two separate call numbers every Monday. Players were instructed to cut the call number out of the newspaper and paste it on the corresponding square on their Bingo card. Winners delivered or mailed their covered card to the Reading Eagle headquarters prior to the Berkshire Mall event.
The big incentive was a grand prize of $1,000, with eight smaller cash prizes of $100. Offering multiple prizes gives game players a greater chance of winning, in turn encouraging more people to play. Instead of simply handing out the prizes, Reading Eagle and Berkshire Mall teamed up to host the giveaway event, during which the winners were announced.
The Mall food court was packed when more than 3,000 people attended the final event at the Berkshire Mall. Food court vendors happily reported that they experienced sales double what their typical Saturday sales would be. “When we decided to do the finale event, no one expected that the turnout would be so big! While it was a little overwhelming, our grand prize winner was thrilled when we called her name to accept the $1000 prize, plus we awarded 8 additional $100 prizes that day. The sponsor is ready to sign on again and it really demonstrated the marketing power of the newspaper, “Gerhart said.
What It Means:
Best Bingo Promo isn’t just a way to gain readers and boost single-copy sales. It is also an excellent way to facilitate goodwill in your local community while increasing the sales and exposure of a local business (or, in this case, a local mall). If you are interested in running or sponsoring a Best Bingo Promo, contact us today!